Breakfast is considered to be one of the most important meals of the day. However, this popular belief is not entirely accurate.
However, while it is beneficial for some, other people are actually better off when they skip breakfast. It is far more dangerous to eat an unhealthy breakfast than to skip it altogether.
You can feel full and energized after eating a healthy breakfast filled with fiber, protein, and healthy fats. By contrast, bad breakfast foods can leave you feeling sluggish, raise your weight, and make you more likely to begin developing chronic diseases.
Below is a list of the 10 worst to eat first thing in the morning.
1. Sugary Cereal
Cereals often contain more sugar than desserts and cookies. Adding whole grains and artificial vitamins or minerals does not turn these into healthy choices. Labels on cereal boxes often state that they contain vitamins and iron too.
It is actually quite the opposite as most of these cereals are extremely processed and barely have any whole grains. A process called fortification artificially adds nutrients to food.
2. Pancakes or Waffles
A pancake or waffle is a breakfast food consisting of refined flour and sugary syrup. Regular consumption may increase the incidence of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and other diseases related to insulin resistance.
Pancakes are literally a type of cake, but they are also full of refined flour and topped with pancake syrup. This either contains high fructose corn syrup, another insulin spiker, or is simply highly caloric (if you use the maple variety).
3. White Toast with Margarine
The high sugar and insulin levels that result from eating super processed white toast with margarine increases your risk of obesity and heart disease.
The majority of margarines contain trans fats, which are among the most unhealthy fats you can consume.
Instead, opt for whole grain toast or sourdough with real butter and some eggs for protein.
Muffins are basically just cupcakes without the frosting… especially if you’re a chocolate chip muffin kind of person. A single muffin is also often way larger than the recommended portion size.
5. Fruit Juice
Even fresh pressed fruit juice is still just sugar water. And a huge insulin spike from a fruit juice first thing in the morning will surely lead to a sugar crash before lunch and the consumption of even more caloric foods.
Diabetes, obesity, and other diseases are associated with high sugar levels that can come from drinking a lot of fruit juice.
The sugar and refined carbohydrates found in pastries, which are generally low in protein, can lead to increased hunger and calorie consumption throughout the day.
7. Flavored, Non-fat Yogurt
Nonfat sweetened yogurt can have far more sugar than ice cream. This type of yogurt does not contain the natural fats found in milk, which can increase feelings of fullness, so you’re also likely to over-eat or become hungry again soon after.
Have a greek yogurt (higher in protein) with 2-4% fat and if you must sweeten it, do it yourself and use some natural sugar like honey or fresh fruit.
8. Prepackaged Smoothies
These are just as bad, if not worse, than drinking juice in the morning. Smoothies often contain way more than an entire day’s worth of fruit. You can still drink smoothies but pair them with a protein powder and use low calorie, high fiber fruit like blueberries.
9. Bagels and Cream Cheese
Bagels are basically just super refined white bread. Pair this with an extremely fatty product like cream cheese and you have a breakfast that is packed with more calories than you bargained for.
10. Processed, Fast Food Breakfast
Whenever possible, avoid using the drive-through before work. Many fast food breakfast options contain high levels of sodium, fat, and calories; even if there are some healthy options out there it can be hard to find them.